Graphic Design Lesson: Final Output Setups

January 26, 2010

There are people out there who have created a Photoshop, Illustrator, and JPEG files and print them, thinking that they’re going to get a perfect picture…but they don’t. It’s a low resolution printout and it looks hideous. Well, did you set up your documents DPI/PPI correctly?

When you open up a new file, the one thing that gets overlooked in MANY cases out there is the Pixels Per Inch or Dots Per Inch setting. This number is usually defaulted to either 72, 240, or 300 and each of those numbers are for different output sources.

If you’re strictly viewing the artwork on a television, computer monitor, cellphone, or any video (RGB) device, your out put should be 72 DPI. As for the pixel dimensions, you should always consider monitor size. Most people out there will have a computer monitor and the resolution of 1440×900. Creating an image larger than that would be pointless because of image file size and just how much of the image will run off the screen. So a pixel dimension within 1440×900 would be suitable for any monitor.

Now we get to print. If your artwork is going to be printed on something, whether it is a letterhead, #10 envelope, billboard, business card, etc., you should ALWAYS set it to 300. It’s because 300 will print perfectly. But you’ll sometimes get artwork that will be at 200-240 PPI, that’s perfectly acceptable, but you’re just getting close to what won’t print well.

The size of what you’re going to print will relate to the pixel dimensions too. For example, let’s say I wanted to use a photograph taken at 300DPI and has a pixel dimension of 1050 x 600, and have the photo printed on both a 3.5″x2″ business card and across an 8.5″x11″ brochure. So it’s going to look perfect on a business card, because a business card measures 3.5″ x 2″ which is the equivalent of 300DPI at 1050 x 600. But if I were to stretch that same photograph across a 8.5″ x 11″ sheet of paper, it’s going to look horrible. So make sure you know what your pixel dimensions are!

There you go. I’m sad the Vikings lost. 😦

Please Brett Favre, come back for another season.

Also, get your printed envelopes and commercial print produced at We print tons of stuff, like 6×9 catalog envelopes, 9×12 booklet envelopes, 8.5×11 letterheads, bank drive-up envelopes, business cards, postcards, and much more. So print with us today!

Vun Run


What’s Two Color Printing?

December 31, 2009

To a veteran designer, you might disregard this post. But to a rookie, this may be informative to you. I’m sure you’ve seen it at almost every print place you have gone to. Such number combinations of 2/1, 4/2, and even 6/4. Well, I’ve stumbled upon a quick guide to tell you the difference between them all.

Well I didn’t necessarily stumble upon it…:)

But consider this guide a handy resource for those who don’t know much about color options.

Fun Fun

Graphic Design Resource: Custom Printed Postcards

December 31, 2009

Postcards. You know, those things you see on the spinners at gas stations and theme parks across the country with cheesy messages with equally cheesy graphics? Well, you know these are not just for telling people where you are, there are also a variety of things you can be using them for:

– Invites to a special party
– Information about an art gallery event
– Telling people that your new business just opened up with a coupon clipping on it
– Sending out an invite to your sermon at your church
– and the list can go on and on!

Now here’s the link for the template for a postcard. Now all of these have PSD, EPS, and InDesign Files as well as JPEGS:

2.75″ x 8.5″ Postcard Template
4″ x 6″ Postcard Template
4″ x 9″ Postcard Template
4.25″ x 5.5″ Postcard Template
4.25″ x 6″ Postcard Template
5″ x 7″ Postcard Template

In real life, everyone’s mailbox is loaded with boring white envelopes and a grocery store flyer that isn’t very well laid out. Now, those who know this, they will try to make a design that will POP OUT from the rest and when you have several people/companies who do this. This creates a battlefield inside the mailbox and it’s a fight for your eyes.

So with that being said, it’s imperative that you come up with something that grabs the attention of someones eye in less than a second. No joke. If it doesn’t look visually enticing, someone’s just going to toss it in the trash. So before you do anything, be VERY specific to who you will be marketing to. The more the design is catered to them, the more responses you will get from your market!

Now a cleverly designed and well thought out postcard will definitely get attention in the mailbox. If you’re not sure what a good design looks like, try grabbing some magazines and looking at the advertisements, browse stock photo websites such as and check out their designs and try to come up with something. Just try to get some inspiration.

Also, a place to get it printed is going to be nice, too. Online printers like us,, is a great way to do everything from your computer chair. Our customer service reps are there to help you out in a timely matter as well. Remember, if you have a custom job, fill out a custom quote form on our site and you’ll receive a quote within 24 hours (business hours).

If you’ve got questions about printing custom postcards or anything related, feel free to comment this page!

Vun Vun